Thank you to the fabulous magical fiction author Wendy Steele for tagging me to join in this blog tour. You can learn more about Wendy and her magical novels here:
I know my earliest memory is watching my granddad wash up, he was in a suit with an apron around his waist, I remember his curly hair. I must have been about three years old. After he passed away my parents bought the house. I remember helping her carry the glass milk bottles inside, one day I dropped one and cried. Big hugs from my mum. This was also prior to me going to school which happened to be just over the fence.
Memories – It is strange what we remember and what we don’t, I’ve no idea if our memories are selective or not. I grew up in a motorcycling family. My dad had a BSA 650 with a double adult sidecar. We went on holiday to Penmaenmawr every year until we couldn’t fit anymore. There were five of us. Awesome times which got even better when we got a dog who decided the sidecar was his kennel.
Yes I am the baby on the roof rack. We had this motorbike and sidecar until I until I was about seventeen years old.
I was quite slow to learn that books would open up a while new world to me. I must have been twelve when I discovered reading as a past-time. The Famous Five by Enid Blyton, Biggles & Worrals by Captain W E Johns, Valley of Song by Elizabeth Goudge and my all time favourite which I still read – The Narnia Series by C S Lewis. An incidental fact about C S Lewis – Apparently he was my Aunts Minister, though I’ve never found out how true this is it still makes me proud.
As an adult I found I loved reading thrillers & adventure novels, especially those with historical backgrounds. Clive Cussler is one, I adore his stories. Matthew Reilly is the other author I enjoy reading. I am also very much a family history researcher, so many will find me with my nose stuck in old newspapers and books, though generally that is online these days. On the Romance side of things I read Mills and Boon for a laugh. However do enjoy reading Nora Roberts books, the magic, the history once again draws me in. Books I don’t like – those with page after page of description. I tend to scan through them or put them down as a lost cause.
Libraries and Book Stores.
The one library I would love to visit is in Manchester, England. It is of course the John Ryland’s Library. This building is a Victorian Neo-Gothic building. The library was founded in 1900 in memory of John Ryland’s by his wife. The reason I wish to visit is not only for the architecture but because of the dragons I keep reading about. Next time I am in England, I will make sure I get there.
The photo of John Rylands Library was from :- http://www.gransnet.com/gnlocal/local-roundup-libraries
Another library I visited was the National Library in London in 2012. WOW I have never seen such a huge column of books before. They must be first editions from over many centuries. As you can see they are not accessible, though standing at the bottom of this multi storied glass cabinet made you feel really small. They had a great cafe sitting at the bottom, from what I recall though I would need to verify that again.
This photo was from the blog :- https://libraryattheilo.wordpress.com/2013/03/25/the-best-libraries-in-the-world/
Of course I find myself at our local library. It is great these days. One level is full of historical records, be it family history or history on Rotorua. On the next level down there is a Teen Area along with None fiction books. The ground level is Adult fiction, Newspapers and Kids. The murals on the walls are wonderful, children run around and enjoy looking. There are groups for singing, art. It is brilliant. They even have a huge chess set which is used daily by all ages.
This is the background on the end wall in the children’s area. The gentleman is sitting in the reading chair which is a stunning piece of work, in its own right. I wish I could show you more murals, sadly I can’t find any online and I don’t have any photos of my own, something I will be remedying soon.
There is so much to do in our library. Market Stalls for small local businesses, book launches and book signings. They do an incredible job here. Below the photo information link is the one for my local library. They even have free internet for everyone, tourists love the place, especially as they have sofa’s and it is warm.
This photo was take from the below website. I love the Dragon. Wish I knew who painted it :- https://embervision.wordpress.com/
Oh my, I forgot about the bookstores. I can’t really say much, we don’t really have many I like. The only family friendly place I enjoy locally is Atlantis Bookstore. It is a second-hand and new books who appeared a year ago and now have three stores in the area. They have a huge range of old books and support local authors too.
I do wish schooling was a bit different, in some ways it has certainly improved in New Zealand with the encouragement of children helping each other with peer reviews in the reading and writing arenas. I love seeing children helping each other. The sad part is not all the children who need assistance get the help they need. There are many children with issues and special needs who require a teacher aide or a reader writer assistant to help them understand what they are reading or trying to write. Many of these children miss out due to not having a Government approved condition or their special needs is not high enough on the spectrum. They don’t do verbal testing, meaning those who can’t write properly miss out on what could have been a great education. We must all remember that everyone learns differently.
Computers in schools have certainly opened up a whole new world to everyone. Advantages and disadvantages like with everything else in the world creates a difficult environment at times. It has certainly opened the world to deaf and hearing impaired people. Here in New Zealand we have three official languages! English, Maori and Sign Language. Sadly Sign Language is not taught in main stream schools. It is deaf awareness week at the moment and there are now computer apps which can be used to learn sign language so we become a more inclusive society.
I have had a few passions over the years, though I think my main one is my family. I adore them, support them through their lives. They are awesome. I had four children, sadly we lost our youngest daughter due to congenital defects. This pushed me into one of my first big passions. Heart Children and Down Syndrome charities, these are two of the issues Anastasia had, though sadly there were a few more too. Ana came, saw, conquered and left again to watch over us from above. I still have a book to write about her, which I know will happen one day.
Anyway, Heart Children were awesome with us, so very supportive. I helped re start a group in my local area working at a Family Support person. Loved every minute of it, sadly I had to move on. Since that time I have worked with a few different organisations, including Parent to Parent, Dress for Success and now I volunteer at a Charity shop once a week.
Ok I love babies, I’ll admit I can’t wait to be a nana, though waiting is what I will have to do. Meanwhile I coo over all babies and small children I come across. I love their cheeky smiles and waves.
My other passion is Family History Research and preparing books for clients and family as gifts to their families. At present I am formatting an old book so it can be re-published for the family worldwide. I am hoping with the help of other researchers to also update this book with the latest family lines. Having the internet certainly helps. There are some great stories out there too. Talk about skeletons in my husbands closet…His family lines are much more interesting than mine, with murderers and bigamists all over the place.
Writing has become a passion since 2012 when I started a novel which is still unpublished, of course it was a Regency Mystery Romance Novel which I hope to publish this year. However with ten books already out, I’m in no hurry. Keep a look out for my books, I can promise a fast paced, twisted and romance which a few readers have already become addicted too.
Once again I’d like to thank the lovely author Wendy Steele for tagging me to join in this blog tour. Please don’t forget to read her blog on the link above and learn more about her wonderful, magical stories.
I hope you’ve enjoyed your stop of the Lovely Blog Tour and will continue to follow it. I’m passing the baton to two authors who I met via social media and who support Indie authors in many ways. Look out for Markie Madden and Virginia McKevitt on your
Links for those I have tagged
These are Markie Madden’s links
These are Virginia McKevitt’s links